Gucci suffered a Christmas sales slump as super-rich tourists were forced to stay home
Gucci sales fell over Christmas as the collapse in super-rich tourists heading to London, Paris, Milan and New York hit business in its 100th year.
The brand’s owner, French luxury group Kering, has promised a revitalising marketing drive, with fashion events in growth markets such as China.
Gucci accounts for 60 per cent of revenues and 80 per cent of profits at Kering and has been one of the industry’s top performers in recent years.
Sales slump: Gucci’s owner, French luxury group Kering, has promised a revitalising marketing drive, with fashion events in growth markets such as China
But it faltered in the final three months of last year, as rivals such as LVMH’s Louis Vuitton soared.
Sales fell 10.3 per cent on a like-for-like basis, worse than the 4 per cent drop predicted by analysts, sending Kering shares down by 7.2 per cent.
The pandemic has stopped consumers travelling abroad, but a rebound in demand in Asia has helped some high-end brands.
Revenues more than doubled and profits treble between 2015 and 2019 thanks to a successful makeover under quirky creative director Alessandro Michele.
But recent poor performance has fuelled speculation that Kering, which also owns brands such as Saint Laurent, might buy smaller names to boost its portfolio.
Billionaire boss Francois-Henri Pinault dismissed short-term worries, saying: ‘We still have a priority for organic growth, starting with Gucci, where we’re far from maturity.’
Gucci will launch more temporary ‘pop-up’ stores to ensure it is in ‘always on mode’ and is lining up product launches to coincide with this year’s 100th anniversary.
Kering revenue fell 8.2 per cent to £3.5billion in the last three months of 2020, as the wider business was hit by lockdowns.
Online business grew sharply, accounting for 13 per cent of sales in 2020, up from 7 per cent a year earlier.